Basehor — His name is Casper, and he should have been served on somebody's dinner plate a long time ago.
Instead, the white, 2-year-old, 5-pound Aurora tilapia glides slowly through the water in a display tank at Cal-Ann Farms in Basehor. He's the first fish that visitors usually see when they go to the tilapia fish farm operated by the Meyer family.
Casper is still alive because of his intelligence and persistence. He continuously escaped the net on "harvest day," the day Meyer pulls tilapia out of a tank to be taken to markets.
"Tilapia are a lot more intelligent fish than a lot of the freshwater species in this area," Jeff Meyer said. "They'll do everything they can to keep from getting caught. When they know somebody is coming after them they'll go down and lie on the bottom."
Casper escaped so often that when he was finally caught, he was repeatedly returned to the tank. Eventually he became so big that he was a threat to eat the smaller fish and was placed in the display tank.
"He's gotten to be somewhat of a pet," Meyer said. "We were surprised at how docile he was. He had just been handled so many times."